Modification of Child Custody or Visitation Rights for Texas Fathers

Fathers want to spend more quality time with their kids. But, when custody gets awarded to mothers, getting a court order for child visitation or custody modification for dads is nearly impossible. Many men have found the family court system hopelessly biased against fathers. The law protects the rights of custodial parents and those who stand to gain from it (i.e., mothers).

Therefore you need a skilled Arizona fathers rights lawyer by Jensen Family Law to guide you in child custody modification of visitation rights. An attorney with experience in this area will provide valuable advice on handling your case while keeping future litigation to a minimum. Read to learn when a court can modify Texas fathers’ child custody and visitation rights.

Through Custodial Relinquishment

Custody relinquishment is a process by which a parent voluntarily gives up their child’s custody rights. It differs from child abandonment in that the parent has not abandoned the child but is giving up their right to custody to allow another person or entity (such as an adoptive parent or father) to take over those rights.

A custodial parent may relinquish their rights if they feel they cannot provide adequate care for their children because of sickness or loss of employment.

For custodial parent to relinquish their rights, they must first file a petition for termination of parental rights with the court. This petition must include details about why the person wants to give up their custody rights and what arrangement would best meet those needs, such as transferring to another parent.

The Child’s Choice

In Texas, if a child is 12 years old or older, the court can consider the child’s preference as to which parent they would like to live with. However, regardless of the child’s choice, the judge will decide based on the child’s best interests. The court may consider other factors, including:

  • The wishes of the child’s parents
  • The interaction and child interrelationship with their parents and siblings
  • The adjustment of the child to their home, school, and community
  • The mental and physical health of individuals in the case

Substantial or Material Change

It’s a change that has occurred since the last time the court made a ruling about a custody or visitation dispute. It could be either because of changes in the custodial parent’s circumstances or those of the non-custodial parent. The court may consider any relevant factors when determining if changes have occurred, including but not limited to the following:

  • Criminal conviction
  • Incarcerated for an extended period
  • Change in residence
  • Change in employment status
  • A change in financial circumstances
  • The mental or physical health of one parent
  • The failure to comply with the original court order regarding child support payments or other matters related to visitation rights

Apart from showing a material change in circumstances since the original order, a parent seeking modification must also show that such a change warrants a modification of their existing order.

Do Children Have Rights of Custody Case In Texas?

In Texas, the courts will interview a child of 12+ years and listen to their wishes. It’s called a “best interests of the child” hearing. The judge will also consider the parent’s wishes, but ultimately the judge must decide what is best for the child.

The court will also consider evidence from both sides and any evidence submitted by third parties. For example, if one parent has made significant changes to accommodate a special need or disability of a child, this may be considered by the court when deciding custody arrangements.

What’s Child Conservatorship modification?

It’s a friendly term from “custody,” which denotes only a win-loose situation. A conservatorship is a legal arrangement allowing a sole managing and primary conservator to make decisions regarding a child’s welfare and upbringing.

The court may modify a child conservatorship if there is evidence that the current arrangement is not in the child’s best interest. For example,  when there has been abuse or neglect, then the court may modify their terms so that they are changed to be more protective of the child.

Custody battles are notoriously tricky for Texas fathers since the deck is often stacked against them from the start. For you to fight for custody, which may include visitation rights and even court-ordered child support, prepare to address negative stereotypes and gender role perceptions in Texas courts. If you believe your child’s current custody arrangement is not in their best interests, consult with a skilled family law attorney to take the necessary steps towards fighting for what you know is right.

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